One of the biggest benefits of being a writer is having Writer Friends. Writing is such a weird job, and publishing is such a complicated business that it's a HUGE relief to hang out with people who are involved in it, too. Plus we're all kind of bizarre people who play with characters that live in our brains, so there's that!
One of my Writer Friends is Becca Fitzpatrick. I met Becca through The Tenners, and I have to say, she is just one of the sweetest people ever. Her book has (deservedly) gotten tons of buzz, and she's had lots of cool things happen, like being the FIRST EVER YA book chosen for the Barnes and Noble First Look Book Club! AND she was blurbed by Sandra Freakin' Brown. AND- this bit is the coolest to me- her UK publishers had someone dress up as her main character and read chapters from the book to a huge crowd in Trafalgar Square! CAN YOU IMAGINE?? I watched the streaming video of it, and wanted to squee and clap my hands, it was so exciting (I only refrained because I was at the library, and they tend to frown on the clapping and the squeeing.)
Now here is the thing, Gentle Readers. Sometimes, when debut novelists get this kind of hype, they become...what is the word I'm searching for here? Ah, yes. A-holes.
(Side note: Whenever I see this type of writer, I always think, "There is no way that person has kids." Because kids keep you grounded like nothing else on Earth. For example, I dropped Small Son off at school the other day only to have his teacher inform me that MY PANTS WERE ON INSIDE OUT. So, you know, even if I became a NYT Bestseller, and they made a long-running TV show out of my book, and I ditched The Husband and married Prince Caspian, thus becoming Queen of Narnia, I could never think I was THAT cool. Because I once left the house with inside-out pants. That's what you call a "learning moment.")
Anyway, my point is that Becca is the complete OPPOSITE of that kind of person. She is so amazing, and nice, and down-to-earth despite all the crazy buzz swirling around her kick-ass book. Speaking of which...
As soon as I heard about HUSH, HUSH, I knew I NEEDED IT IN MY FACE RIGHT NOW OMG! Fallen angels! Forbidden love! Creepy setting! Sadly, I thought I was going to have to wait until January to read it, but then the entire publishing industry went, "Hey, you know what? This HUSH, HUSH book is awesome, awesome, and sexy, sexy, so we want to put it out earlier (earlier)!" It hit the shelves this Tuesday, making it the First Official Tenner Book to be released! (Becca is a Tenner b/c her original release date was 2010, and once a Tenner, always a Tenner).
Another reason I wanted to read it: LOOK AT THAT GUY AND HIS HALF-NAKED SELF! I mean, um, look at the shading! And what an interesting, uh, color palette! And feathers!
Before I start telling you all the reasons you need to put HUSH, HUSH in your faces right now OMG, let me do a little disclaimer. Yes, Becca is my friend. Yes, as I have mentioned above, I like her a lot. HOWEVER, do not think this makes me biased! As Lindsey Leavitt said in her blog post about reading HEX HALL, knowing and liking a writer personally makes you that much more nervous to read his/her book. And besides, I don't pimp books I don't personally enjoy. What would be the point?
Okay, so first of all, here's the book's description from Amazon:
For Nora Grey, romance was not part of the plan. She's never been particularly attracted to the boys at her school, no matter how much her best friend, Vee, pushes them at her. Not until Patch came along.
With his easy smile and eyes that seem to see inside her, Nora is drawn to him against her better judgment.
But after a series of terrifying encounters, Nora's not sure who to trust. Patch seems to be everywhere she is, and to know more about her than her closest friends. She can't decide whether she should fall into his arms or run and hide. And when she tries to seek some answers, she finds herself near a truth that is way more unsettling than anything Patch makes her feel.
For Nora is right in the middle of an ancient battle between the immortal and those that have fallen - and, when it comes to choosing sides, the wrong choice will cost her life.
So now that you know what it's about, here are Five Reasons that HUSH, HUSH Rocks, Rocks.
1)It Is Scary Like Whoa.
Don't get me wrong, there's plenty of sweet, hawt romancin' in HUSH, HUSH, but at its heart, it is one heck of a scary book. The tension, the atmosphere, the villain...*shudder* Perfect for Halloween!
2) Smart, Prickly Heroine
Nora is no damsel in distress, but she's not a butt-kicking Buffy wannabe, either. She's lost her father recently, which has given her an interesting combination of strength and vulnerability that I found very believable. She's also smart, but still capable of making bad decisions, which, again, very real. And I loved that she was a little "prickly" because she has to be tough to stand up to Patch. Which leads me to...
Mmmmm... Patch Cipriano. When it comes to Bad Boys, Patch is the real thing. He's snarky, he's cocky, and he's legitimately dangerous. He does bad things for good reasons- or at least reasons that are good to him- and his chemistry with Nora is SMOKIN'.
4) Not Your Every Day Teenage Romance
Patch and Nora's attraction is one of the coolest elements of the book, because Becca presents a different kind of love story. This is no, "We clapped eyes on each other, and knew it was OMG TRU LUV 4-EVA!" romance. This is the, "I don't trust you, and I'm not sure I even like you, but it might be really, really fun to make out with you a lot before I inevitably have to kill you." Needless to say, I LOVED THAT SO MUCH. It is, after all, very close to "I Hate That I Love You, etc., BUT YOUR HAIR IS SO SHINY, GAH!", and we all know how I feel about that.
5)Super Cool Mythology
HUSH, HUSH deals with fallen angels, and let's face it, that is bad-ass. It's an unusual mythology, and one that hasn't been beaten to death yet. Because I was so unfamiliar with the Nephilim, and Cheshvan, and The Book of Enoch, all the cool twists and turns were really surprising.
Whew! So there's my list of all the reasons HUSH, HUSH needs to be in your faces right now! And if that didn't convince you, let me draw your attention to that cover one more time:
You can nearly see naughty things, people. And also, there is this one scene in a motel room in a storm, and they're alone, and the power goes out, and- look, just read it, okay?